November 26, 2004
Mr. Bob Vickers, President
The Robert J. Vickers Foundation
P. O. Box 1225
Warrensburg, MO 64093
Dear Mr. Vickers:
Greetings! [The introduction paragraph is purely to connect. . . Either 1) first- or second-generational connections/relationships, 2) geographic connections, and/or 3) field of interest connections AND/OR relationships.]
Golf courses are green unto harvest and the players are many. Players can either Go Out Lost Forever - or they can go knowing that God Offers Love and Forgiveness! Over the last 50 years golf has grown enormously, according to a recent study by the National Golf Foundation. Golf has gained from 1.5 to 3 million new golfers per year. As the oldest organized sport in the world, golf is an exciting preoccupation for over 26 million Americans. The ongoing vitality of the game is evidenced by its ability to attract participants regardless of their demographic background.
During the last 50 years we have seen golfers increase from 3.5 million in 1950 to over 26.4 million in 1998. Part of this success is attributed to the tremendous increase in public golf courses. Today public courses represent over 70% of all golf facilities in the United States. If this "natural" trend continues, golfers could grow to 34 million and rounds played to 780 million by the year 2010.
Other studies by George Barna and Promise Keepers show that if a church wins 100 youth or children to Christ, it will gain 3.5 family units into the church. If a church wins 100 women to Christ, it will gain 17 family units into the church. The same study reveals, however, that if a church wins 100 men to Christ, it will gain 93 family units into the church. Efficiently building The Kingdom means reaching, equipping and sending the builders.
Over the past several years, our nation has witnessed a significant, life changing movement of God’s Spirit in and through the hearts of thousands of men. George Barna states, "The explosive growth of Promise Keepers in the past years is clear evidence of a turn in American churches: men are finding freedom and renewal in the name of Christ. But inside and outside the church, the battle for the hearts of the male American is just beginning to take shape. The stage is set for a dramatic awakening of our nations’ men, and yet, this potential does not guarantee that widespread revival will actually happen."
This is evidenced by the fact that there are 94 million men in America and 68 million of them claim no personal relationship with Jesus Christ. It is relatively easy to believe that the majority of these are on a golf course somewhere on Sunday morning. As a national ministry, the Christian Golf Association is dedicated to, and offers a unique proposal that will help spread the Gospel to these 68 million men.
The Christian Golf Association is a concerted effort by Christian golfers across the United States to join together in brotherhood, unity and mission. In a spirit of servant leadership they seek to equip every Christian golfer in America with the tools, confidence and enthusiasm to share the Gospel with every golfer in America! The Christian Golf Association is currently made up of 57 local chapters in 44 states. The Christian Golf Association provides a forum where Christian golfers can invite their golfing friends, churched and unchurched - to participate in golf outings. Tee times are preceded by bible study, devotion and prayer in comfortable, relaxed, non-threatening environments. It seeks to dismantle years of beliefs that "Christians don’t enjoy themselves and do not know how to have fun."
The Christian Golf Association is committed to unite Christian golfers in a bond of fellowship and confidence that makes sharing the gospel of Jesus Christ with other golfers a natural "conversation" rather than a "textbook witnessing assignment." This is being accomplished through various strategies including:
• Monthly golf outings at local courses. Each member brings a guest(s), preferably unchurched or under-churched. A local spiritual leader brings a short message, devotion, bible study and prayer session prior to the group tee time. Christian golfers are urged to begin a golf ministry in their churches as an outreach tool.
• Local community-wide tournaments that draws golfers of all beliefs and non-beliefs. The gospel is presented through word, music and fellowship.
• Regional tournaments are held and hosted by various chapters drawing golfers from several states in their region of the country. These tournaments provide members with the opportunity for fellowship and to compare notes on activities in their respective states and chapters.
• Tee Shot Heard ‘Round the World, an annual, national tournament brings members from throughout the country together for widespread fellowship, renewing, "refilling" of the Spirit along with a giant helping of enthusiasm and confidence.
• We offer a "Partner Hotline" for traveling members. No matter where they are on business or vacation if they need a Christian partner for a round of golf or just to get together for dinner and fellowship, they call the toll free hotline for member information in the area where they are traveling.
In order to facilitate these strategies and to enable the Christian Golf Association of America to equip every Christian golfer in America with the spiritual tools, confidence and enthusiasm necessary to share the gospel of Jesus Christ with every golfer in America, we are submitting the enclosed proposal for your review. Would you make the decision to plant a seed-grant of $50,000 to reach the many thousands of unchurched and under-churched golfers and potential golfers, across America. You will have a substantial effect on The Kingdom’s work.
Please consider the enclosed proposal as a creative way of making that happen. I am eager to discuss this proposal with you and stand ready to provide any additional information which will assist you in your decision making. I am immediately available to address any questions you have concerning this project. Please feel free to call me at (660) 747-6390 or 1-800-PLAY GOLF
Andrew F. Emerson, Founder President
Christian Golf Association
Christian Golf Association
Mission and Vision Statements:
The Christian Golf Association is dedicated and pledged to utilize the game of golf as a platform and vehicle for evangelizing, witnessing and sharing the gospel of Jesus Christ with other golfing friends and acquaintances in a relaxed, comfortable environment for both the member and the recipient while promoting the fellowship and common interests among Christian golfing enthusiasts. We seek to equip every Christian golfer in America with the tools, confidence and enthusiasm to share the gospel with every golfer in America.
We know that golf has become a "passion" with many people. We know that many of these also have a passion for Jesus Christ and that they have difficulty integrating the two "passions." The Christian Golf Association vision is "to equip every Christian golfer in America with the tools, confidence and enthusiasm to share the gospel of Jesus Christ with every golfer in America."
The Dynamics of Our Mission:
1. To provide a locally based chapter in every community that has a golf course for the purpose of reaching out to the men, women and children who are interested in the game.
2. To provide an "umbrella" organization in order to unite and create "synergy" and "want to" in reaching people for Christ.
3. To play a dynamic role in increasing families values and family unity throughout the United States. Reach 100 young people and you gain 3.5 family units; reach 100 women and you gain 17 family units; reach 100 men for Christ and you gain 93 family units.
Target Market and Geographical Information:
• 26.4 million golfers in America and their families.
• Approximately 3.5 million new golfers who take up the game yearly.
• Our geographic interest is primarily the United States.
The Christian Golf Association is a 501 (c)(3), not-for-profit organization established in Warrensburg, Missouri in 1989 and is governed by a national advisory board consisting of seven people. Please see attached 501 (c)(3) papers.
Mr. Andrew F. Emerson, Executive Director (660) 747-6390, Voice
Christian Golf Association (660) 111-1111, Cell
P.O. Box 1225 e-mail: Andrew@ChristianGolfAssociation.us
Warrensburg, MO 64093 Website: www.ChristianGolfAssociation.us
Financial Request and Purpose:
The needs of an expanding organization like the Christian Golf Association are overwhelming at this critical time. Faced with the incredible task of fiscally managing a continually expanding ministry, our current and immediate needs are such that we are asking you for a grant of $50,000 toward our general operating budget (see Organization Budget attached on Page 4).
Evaluation and Accountability:
The progress and effectiveness of Christian Golf Association will be determined by ongoing analysis and oversight of staff, management, and Board of Directors. Because we are committed to integrity, we are willing to complete any reasonable evaluative measure that you request.
Christian Golf Association
Millions of men and women are on the golf course each Sunday and never hear the word of Jesus Christ preached or accept the opportunity to know Him as their personal savior. This has a dramatic and deteriorating effect on conventional family values and family cohesiveness. Often as not the father heads to the golf course while the mother and children go off to Sunday School and church.
Over the past several years, our nation has witnessed a significant, life-changing movement of God’s Spirit in and through the hearts of men. Men all over the country are asking "Does anybody know? Does anybody care?" They are searching for and screaming out for someone to be in a deeper relationship with them. Also over the past several years, our nation has witnessed tremendous growth in sports related activities - leading this growth is the game of golf. With such a wide proliferation of golf courses in the nation the Christian Golf Association finds that whatever programs the church has sought to use to reach lost men, women and young people and to meet the needs of redeemed people are just not sufficient.
The explosive growth of Promise Keepers in the past several years is clear evidence of a turn in American churches: men are finding freedom and renewal in the name of Christ. However, inside and outside the church, the battle for the hearts of the people is just beginning to take shape. The stage is set for a dramatic awakening of our nation’s men, women and children. Yet, this potential does not guarantee that widespread revival will actually happen. People do not come on their own.
There is a powerful, yet natural solution to this problem. As Christians, WE MUST meet them "in the trenches." A good general carries the battle to the enemy rather than wait for the enemy to come to him. As we already know from various studies, the number of golfers has increased from 3.5 million in 1950 to over 26.4 million in 1998. And, if this "natural" trend continues, it is expected that the number of golfers will grow to over 34 million by the year 2010. Also, these golfers will play over 780 million rounds of golf. If, according to other statistics, 85 percent of the population of the United States professes to be Christian - how many of the 34 million golfers are Christian? Ten percent? Twenty-five percent? Fifty percent or possibly 85 percent? If only ten percent, then there are 3.4 million potential laborers for Christ.
Churches have found it extremely difficult to recruit members to turn out for weekly visitation programs to go and share the message of the Church. These same members will, however, go out to the golf course a couple of times a month, perhaps even weekly. The Christian Golf Association currently helps members in 44 states, through local chapter golf outings and tournaments, take advantage of, and to create their own opportunities for witnessing and sharing the message.
Members attending the chapter outing, tournaments, etc., are urged to bring at least one unchurched or "under-churched" person to the event. Most often the guest is someone with whom the member plays golf frequently, but who he or she has never "taken" the opportunity to share Christ with. Each golfing event is preceded by a short (approximately thirty minutes) devotional period, bible study and/or prayer session. They are held in the clubhouse at the golf course in familiar, comfortable surroundings and a non-threatening environment. These sessions are led by local clergy or lay persons.
Afterwards, its "tee-time." Members and guest(s) go to their carts and head to the tee-box. For the next 18 holes, about 4 hours, the Christian Golf Association member has a "captive audience." From the feed-back we get, the conversation invariably turns from "just what is the Christian Golf Association and what do you do," to Jesus Christ. Additionally, through the weekly and/or monthly golf outings, members have the opportunity for renewal and revitalizing their own faith and enthusiasm through the fellowship.
Our Objectives and Goals:
I. National Ministry
Tee Shot Heard ‘Round the World - National Golf Retreat and Praise Rally (2nd Annual)
Objective: It seeks to bring members together from all across America to equip, train and resource Christian Golf Association members in order to help them disciple and evangelize other golfers across the country and to build a ministry in every city that has a golf course. As a family oriented ministry, a national youth golf outing would be held in conjunction with the "Tee Shot Heard ‘Round the World." Date: Myrtle Beach, South Carolina June 9, 10 and 11, 2000.
Focus: To equip and train Christian Golf Association members and instill confidence and enthusiasm to help them be effective leaders and bring the Christian Golf Ministry to every church and city. We intend to reach the projected 34 million golfers in America. The retreat/ rally is open to the public.
II. Regional Ministry
Objective: Divide the country into six regions with local Christian Golf Association chapters hosting a regional golf retreat and mini-praise rally on a rotating basis. Regional golf outings would also be held in conjunction with these gatherings. The regional ministry seeks to reach out directly to members in these smaller areas on a more personal basis to help train members in discipleship and evangelism and how they can build the ministry in their individual churches and communities.
Focus: Establish the regional ministry in the six areas of the country under dynamic local leadership in order to maintain the momentum and enthusiasm of the unique concept of a "golf ministry." Regional meetings and golf events would bring members and their guests together for fellowship and discipleship training. Members would be trained in methods of expanding the ministry to other communities in close proximity to theirs.
III. Local Ministry
Objective: Establish a local chapter of the Christian Golf Association in every community in the nation that has a golf course. This is where Christian Golf Association begins and ends. To accomplish our mission while striving towards our vision, the message must begin here, at the local chapter level. It is here that we reach Christian golfers and equip them with the tools necessary to reach the everyday golfer. It is here that we also try to strengthen family values and family unity by encouraging families to "play together."
Focus: The local ministry is the actual "heartbeat" of the Christian Golf Association ministry. At this grassroots level the Christian Golf Association gets "down in the trenches" and works.
a. Chapter Golf Outings - Each local chapter conducts a minimum of one outing each month. Each member, utilizing the old concept of "each one bring one," brings a member to the outing. The guest is usually a nonbeliever or an under-churched person.
b. Youth Golf Clinics - Chapters work with local golf course professionals to conduct free weekly or biweekly golf clinics for community young people. With the tremendous interest among young people that has been stirred by Tiger Woods, we have seen a large increase in the number of participants in this program.
c. Ladies Clinics - Working with local golf course professionals, chapters offer free clinics for ladies. The purpose is to get more women involved in the sport that takes a lot of their spouses time.
d. Charitable Fund Raising - Local chapters conduct annual or semi-annual golf tournaments in their communities. Funds raised from the tournaments are donated to designated charities such as food banks, homeless shelters, etc.